To predict therapeutic uses of a psychotropic drug investigated in laboratory animals there afe two different ways being employed: On the one hand, creation of animal models which mimic a certain psychopathological condition and investigation of drug effects and mechanisms involved, on the other hand comparison of profiles of activity in several pharmacological tests. If these pharmacological methods to be included are selected accordingly to the drug studied, the accuracy of prediction of the therapeutic effects should well be improved because of the following two reasons: 1. The therapeutic effects of the psychotropic drugs known so far are described by the clinical observer as syndroms, i.e. as being composed by several symptoms. For instance, the „neuroleptic syndrome” as observed by Delay includes slowing down of psychomotor functions, emotional neutrality and affective indifference. Similarly, the „antidepressant syndrome”reported by Kielholz is composed of three distinct, even divergent actions. 2. The second reason to use profiles of activity instead of absolute activities in one test is given by the fact that therapeutic administration of a psychotropic drug always means to give a certain dose to a certain patient and to observe all the various actions. Provided that toxicity of a drug allows a reasonable freedom of dosage,the major concern of the physician treating a patient is not the dose,but the effects to be seen after a chosen dose of a drug. Thus, what he observes is a „compound action” of which the therapeutic value is given by the relative preponderance of the components. The calculation of profiles of activity is shown for tricyclic psychotropic drugs (thioridazine, chlorpromazine, perphenazine, amitriptyline and imipramine) making use of three behavioural tests, and a group of minor tranquilizers composed of the three benzodiazepines chlordiazepoxide, diazepam and nitrazepam. In the tricyclic drugs,the correlations between pharmacological profiles and therapeutic actions are good; in the group of minor tranquilizers a hypothesis for a correlation of the sleep-inducing action of nitrazepam in man with the pharmacodynamic properties was presented. This leads to the conclusion that also for the design of profiles of activity, we need behavioural and neurophysiological methods in the animal which involved mechanisms similar to the ones supposed in human patients.

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